The power of the truth never fails to astound me. You might have heard of the saying, “the truth shall set you free” but I remember reading another version a long time ago: the truth shall set you free but first it shall make you uncomfortable!
What is it about speaking from the heart and telling the truth that makes it so scary? I’ve found that it appears to boil down to one specific thing – the impact that it will have on other people.
No one can be absolutely sure what the actual outcome of expressing how you really think and feel will be. It is this realization, conscious or otherwise, that is the primary cause of such confusion and anxiety. In other words, this is the part that makes us feel uncomfortable about telling the truth. So why bother doing it?
During my research on the subject, I unearthed some interesting medical studies which revealed that having your say and being truthful, boosts mental and physical health because you sidestep the stress that goes along with bottling up your emotions or worse still, telling a lie.
Unless you’re a brash personality and you believe that you have to voice out every, single thought that crosses your mind regardless of the consequences, being upfront about your feelings and speaking your truth will bring a lot of benefit to your mental and emotional health. It can also strengthen the bonds you have with other people.
Here are some tips that will help make life a little easier when you find yourself in a situation when you need to tell the truth and speak out. Take a deep breath, clear your mind and here we go.
Get your facts right
It all starts with being honest with yourself – take some time on your own to go over the situation you are confronted with.
Often, things are not as bad as they seem when you calmly think through the circumstances requiring you to be truthful either to yourself or to someone else. Be in the present and do not worry about the future outcome. Just get your facts straight first.
Timing is everything
Even if you mean well, insisting on speaking your truth or speaking out about how you feel when someone’s rushing a deadline or in the midst of a crisis, is never going to bring about a productive outcome.
The truth needs to be heard of course but if it’s to do any good, you need to make sure that when you decide to speak your mind, everyone concerned is as calm and approachable as possible.
You can never be sure how things are going to turn out when you decide to express how you feel to someone so driving yourself crazy with worry is just a waste of your precious energy. It does absolutely nothing to keep you calm. Your responsibility is only to bring the truth out into the open with kindness, the rest will play out as it will.
Roll the dice and let the chips fall where they may – part of being honest with yourself is to accept this fact and know that it is okay to have an uncomfortable conversation as long as you are kind and honest and say what needs to be said.
Once the truth has been spoken, listen to what the other person has to say. Take responsibility for any wrongdoing on your part and be compassionate. This means you need to resist being defensive or counter attacking by placing blame on anyone else.
Even if you are not immediately met with an understanding response, your understanding approach at that significant moment, will undoubtedly have an impact on other person, when they reflect on the situation.
Ultimately, it is your heart or your intuition that will always be your best life compass. Your mind may be the one to sort through the muddle and analyse a situation but it’s your heart that will show you the right path to take. So listen carefully, follow your heart and speak your truth. You won’t regret it.